After Cannes, detox in Provence on a bike tour of the region. E-bikes have opened up cycling adventures for those who maybe don’t want — or can’t — ride long distances.
Self-guided tours in Cannes and Provence abound, and good tours with a guide offer better efficiency, historic information and insider local access. “We are also able, for an extra cost, to deliver bikes and guests to a departure point when a client wants to do a one-way trip,” says Jean-Charles Dieuzayde, founder of YouRent-Cannes. They offer guided bike tours recommended by concierges at luxe hotels including the InterContinental Carlton Cannes.
“For Cannes, the best route is definitely the loop from Cannes to Saint Raphael and back,” says Dieuzayde. It’s a two-hour ride. “It’s an amazing road between the coast and the Esterel Mountains.”
If you’re ready for some mountain biking, head further onto the Esterel Mountains.
“It’s extremely fun. There are a lot of different trails. It’s also accessible for any level from beginners to experts,” says Dieuzayde. “E-bikes have changed everything. When you’re a family or four or more, whether young or old, it used to be a problem if someone isn’t in shape. Now, you just have to be able to balance and ride a bike.” There are also tours for people passionate about biking who don’t what to use an e-bike.
During the Cannes Film Festival, they can sell out of bike rentals so plan ahead. For guided tours book at least a week ahead. Insider tip: A cruise ship docks on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays so booking is more competitive.
“This cycling tour of Provence concentrates all the greatness that the region has to offer,” says Thomas Boutin, a former elite pro cyclist and Discover France CEO. “You will visit the remarkable city of Avignon, taste some great wines such as the famous Chateauneuf du Pape, see some amazing historical villages like Gordes or St. Remy de Provence, cycle through lavender fields, olive groves and visit castles and art museums.”
Boutin says most bikes are available in an electric version. “People are able to travel longer, faster … and the e-bikes also remove a psychological barrier for people who doubt their [fitness] levels.”
Discover France categorizes trips by level: casual, hobby, active and pro according to the distance covered and altitude climbed. Boutin says children may benefit from a trailer. The only requirement is to keep your balance but there is no age limit. “[French cyclist] Robert Marchand is proof of this, a cyclist at 107 years old.”